A lot. It’s a 5-star read if you’re asking me.
This was the most comforting and wonderful book to read. I almost wished I had read it just a few days/weeks later. My thoughts here today will probably be a jumbly ramble, so apologies in advance. I guess the biggest takeaway from it would be it comes with a big recommendation from me to read it!
I finished reading The Jane Austen Society around the time I got a call from my sister about my Dad – it was a race to Guelph, where they lived, to be with my family news that came that day. I would remain in Guelph for 3 weeks until the time of my Dad’s passing.
I think reading The Jane Austen Society would have been a most helpful balm to read during those emotional weeks, but I could take a lot of comfort in having the fond memories of the story with me anyway. It was just that I was so entirely immersed in this story that I can’t help but think how solacing it would have been to be reading it during this specific time. I read another book, and it happened to be one about grief so some thought it might be a little weird to read at that exact time, but I did enjoy the sometimes humorous way it had, but it just wasn’t the best for me. THIS one would have been. Everyone in it is so affectionately and wonderfully created. I think back to the characters in Helen Simonson’s The Summer Before the War and draw parallels to my love for them to the love I had for everyone here.
Said to be for fans of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society, I can fully and completely endorse this message. When I read Guernsey those many years ago, I felt like I wanted to crawl inside the book and live there with those characters. That same feeling is the one I had while reading The Jane Austen Society. 100%. And the love for Jane Austen is, of course, present throughout. A great, great love for Jane is found everywhere inside.
It’s absolutely wonderful. What a stunning debut. What a much needed book for right now. I cannot wait to see this be adapted to film! (That’s going to happen right?) Right after I finished reading, I discovered that Richard Armitage is narrating the audiobook. SWOON. I will most definitely be listening to this book again, because they couldn’t have chosen a more perfectly perfect person to narrate this wonderful, wonderful book! My heart is absolutely swelling with the knowledge that it will be a 5-star audiobook too.
Please read this one. In case you haven’t figured it out yet, I loved it.
(Thank you so much to Keely at Sparkpoint Studios for putting this on my radar! I appreciate it!)